We love photography here at Black Southern Belle and when we want a good fix, we can go to to Denise Benson. She is a Carolina Belle taking amazing shots all across the Carolinas. We instantly fell in love with her story and her photography style. Learn more about Denise Below:
Name: Denise Benson
Business Name: Denise Benson Photography
What You Provide: Portrait Photography Services
Where Are You Based: Rock Hill, SC
Why Did I Decide To Start A Business: I’ve owned an insurance agency with my father since 2002 and have always had an entrepreneurial spirit. Working alongside him has shown me what it truly takes to run a business and I’ve gained so much insight from that position, but working a 9-5 wasn’t allowing me to use my creativity. In 2012 I decided to take my love of photography and use it to start a second business. It’s allowed me to be creative, think outside the box and still be my own boss.
Favorite Client Story: I’m so blessed to work with many wonderful people, but earlier this year I did my first high school senior model rep photo shoot (Senior Rep programs are marketing programs set up by photographers to help expand their Senior Photography network) and anytime you’re trying something new there’s a little fear that comes along with it. I found the perfect senior model to represent this campaign and because she, and her mother, were so excited about it, it got me even more excited. I loved working with her and I feel like she will be an asset to my senior rep campaign for this upcoming
Business Idols: Sue Bryce + Marc Baptiste. Both amazing photographers that bring out the most beautiful sides of a woman.
Any Mentors: Not an official mentor per se, but there is a photographer that helped me out tremendously with advice early on in my career. Any time I had a question regarding equipment, location, anything he was willing to help me. I still share my work with him for constructive criticism and he will do the same.
Favorite Thing About Being Southern: I was born abroad as a military brat, but moved to the South when I was 11 and it instantly felt like home. The people here are so welcoming and friendly I couldn’t imagine living somewhere else and if I did I know I’d miss the hospitality the most…along with the food of course.
Favorite Southern Dish: Mac n Cheese. It’s not easy on the hips, but in moderation it’s the perfect Southern side dish.
Most Important Thing I’ve Done To Build My Business: Continuously challenging myself. I get bored easily so if I feel like I’m in a rut I will do whatever it takes to pull myself out of it. I’ve done everything from going on photo walks with other photographers around Charlotte, NC, doing styled shoots to expand my creativity, or just talked to other people in the business to brainstorm on new ideas.
Favorite Southern Brands: Anything that represents my South Carolina Gamecocks
Favorite Item to Wear While Doing Business: I recently purchased a t-shirt with my logo on it that I’m excited to start wearing during my shoots!
We love starting off the weekend with stories of Black Southern Belle entrepreneurs and are sooo happy to show off Denise today. Make sure to check her out for your next event or portrait session! We will continue to swoon over her work while bear this summer heat that has finally arrived.